This week, we hear from Karen, T1 … and foster mom and cat whisperer!!!  Enjoy!

I volunteer for an animal rescue and was lucky to have the opportunity to foster a mother and her 5 kittens.  She had been found outdoors with her litter of tiny newborns.  I was looking to get a two bonded kitties after my kitty had passed 6 months before and decided to foster-to-adopt.

Fostering was a wonderful experience.  When I first met the momma cat, she was very friendly, jumping up from her bed of kittens to greet me.  She loves to be picked up and cuddled.  But I still remember so vividly her look of panic when I moved her and her 5 kittens from her foster home. 

She adjusted quickly, focusing on her little 3 week-old kittens.  It is amazing how the mom knew instinctively how to care for them. She would frequently “speak” to her little ones with cute coos and trills.  (I never hear her make those sounds now that her kids are grown.) When it was time to nurse them, she would plop down right of top of the pile of kittens, forcing them to crawl out from under her to find the milk, then purr so loud! Once, I actually thought I was hearing a diesel truck outside and realized it was all the purring.

Two kittens found a new home together, which was especially wonderful since kittens do best in pairs. I visited them recently and they are well adjusted in their new home at the beach.  I kept mom and three of her kittens. 

Despite all three growing up together and coming from the same litter, each has a unique personality.  I named the boy kitty Milo (you KNOW I love this!), after a character in my favorite children’s book, The Phantom Tollbooth.  He is my needy one, always wanting his mom’s or my attention.  Milo would play all day if I indulged him.  Tina is very shy so she is my “foster fail”, meaning I decided to keep her because she would be hard to adopt out.  Mom is Maddi and the other girl is Peanut.  All four like to hang around me, always “orbiting” nearby … my husband calls them my “moons.”  They do nothing more for my diabetes than simply make me happy and keep me company when I’m home alone.  Well, that’s PLENTY!!!  Maddi is the friendliest pet I have ever had.  Having four cats makes for a lot of fun and laughter, watching them play and nap together.


Please have fun with this paper, Are Cats Liquid?  It’s technical and far-reaching … and pretty much hilarious!  As the author writes at the end: 

Obviously this is a joke. Everything here and in Fardin’s paper is patently absurd. That said, except for a few instances of clever wordplay and terminology stretched to the breaking point, nothing that Fardin wrote is technically untrue.

The point is that pretending to take the “cats are liquid” meme seriously allows for an entertaining and accessible introduction of many important ideas in continuum mechanics, one of the main parts of modern physics and the foundation of mechanical and civil engineering.

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